duchy in Central Europe until 1809

Saxe-Eisenach (German: Sachsen-Eisenach) was the name of three different Ernestine duchies that existed at different times in Thuringia. The chief town and capital of all three duchies was Eisenach.

Duchy of Saxe-Eisenach
Herzogtum Sachsen-Eisenach
1596 – 1638
1640 – 1644
1672 – 1809
Saxe-Eisenach, shown amongst the other 18th-century Ernestine duchies
Saxe-Eisenach, shown amongst the other 18th-century Ernestine duchies
StatusState of the Holy Roman Empire
State of the Confederation of the Rhine
Historical eraMiddle Ages
• Division of Erfurt
• Partitioned from
1596 1596
• Partitioned into Altenburg
    and Weimar
• Partitioned from Weimar
• Partitioned into Gotha and
• Partitioned from Weimar
• United with Weimar
1741 1809
• Merged to form
Preceded by
Succeeded by
Saxe-Coburg-Eisenach Saxe-Coburg-Eisenach
Saxe-Gotha Saxe-Gotha
Saxe-Weimar Saxe-Weimar
Saxe-Altenburg Saxe-Altenburg
Saxe-Gotha Saxe-Gotha
Saxe-Weimar Saxe-Weimar
Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach



The first Duchy of Saxe-Eisenach was created in 1596 for Johann Ernst, younger son of Johann Frederick II of Saxe-Coburg-Eisenach.

In 1633, the Wettin line died out, and Johann Ernst inherited it, but he died heirless in 1638, and the territories of Saxe-Gotha and Saxe-Eisenach were split between Saxe-Weimar and Saxe-Altenburg.

In 1640 Saxe-Eisenach was again separated off from Saxe-Weimar for Albert, son of John II of Saxe-Weimar, but after just four years he too died without an heir, and Saxe-Eisenach was then divided between Saxe-Gotha and Saxe-Weimar, ruled by his brothers Ernst and Wilhelm.

In 1662 Wilhelm, Duke of Saxe-Weimar died, leaving four children: Johann Ernst, Adolf Wilhelm, Johann Georg and Bernhard. Adolf Wilhelm, got Eisenach, but he had to share this with his younger brother Johann Georg. Johann Georg eventually took an allowance from the duchy instead of taking part in the government, and moved to live in the small town of Marksuhl. Adolf William’s first four sons died soon after birth. In 1668 he died, just before of the birth of his fifth child, Wilhelm August, who became the new Duke of Saxe-Eisenach from his birth, with Johann Georg as regent. A sickly boy, he died in 1671 at only two years old, and Johann Georg I became the duke of Saxe-Eisenach.

Saxe-Eisenach changed again in 1672. Frederick William III of Saxe-Altenburg died and his lands were split. The line of Johann Georg I ruled Saxe-Eisenach for 69 years, until Duke Wilhelm Heinrich died heirless in 1741. Ernst August I of Saxe-Weimar, Wilhelm's second cousin, inherited Saxe-Eisenach; he and his successors ruled Saxe-Weimar and Saxe-Eisenach in a personal union until 1809, when the duchies were formally merged into the Duchy of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach.

Dukes of Saxe-Eisenach


First creation


Created in 1572 as Saxe-Coburg-Eisenach
1596 divided into Saxe-Coburg and Saxe-Eisenach

Divided between Saxe-Altenburg and Saxe-Weimar

Second creation


Divided between Saxe-Gotha and Saxe-Weimar

Third creation


Line extinct

Personal union with Saxe-Weimar


Merged with Saxe Weimar into Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach


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